I have seen this story reported, but didn’t mention it here until further developments. But now there might be a Congressional investigation, so the time has come to bring it up. A company founded to sell carbon credits–what a racket!–is being accused of forcefully evicting poor Ugandans from their homes. Senator Inhofe wants to investigate. From the Daily Caller story:
In a letter sent to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton this week, Inhofe demanded an investigation into crimes allegedly committed Africa and Latin America in the name of mitigating climate change — as sanctioned by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Inhofe’s concern stems in part from a September Oxfam International report that detailed how The New Forest Company, a firm that grows tree plantations in order to sell carbon credits, violently evicted more than 20,000 people from their homes and land in Uganda to make way for one of their forests. “Thousands of people are suffering because they have been evicted without meaningful consultation or compensation,” wrote Oxfam International Executive Director Jeremy Hobbs. According Oxfam, the army and police were mustered to push people off the land in Kiboga and Mubende districts. Their removal, the witnesses said, was violent. “People told Oxfam that the army and police were deployed in the area to enforce the evictions, and that many people were beaten during the process,” according to the Oxfam report. “Some villagers also say that casual labourers, whom they believe were employed by NFC, joined the police and army in burning homes, destroying crops and butchering livestock.”
In a letter to Oxfam dated Sept. 9, 2011, NFC denied that there had been any violence or property destruction. ”There were no incidences of injury, physical violence, or destruction of property during the voluntary vacation process that have been brought to the attention of NFC,” the company wrote.
Right. I am sure the poor Ugandans left their homes happily to “save the planet!” Note the company didn’t say they had paid for the land, at least not in the part of the response quoted.
If this is true–and we don’t know–it is both a scandal and a sign of the kind of authoritarian actions that GWH threatens to unleash. By all means, investigate!